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Relatively cheap gaming rig, please critique.

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February 27, 2007 2:29:32 AM

Processor
Intel Core 2 Duo E4300 Allendale 1.8GHz

Motherboard
GIGABYTE GA-965P-DS3

Memory
CORSAIR XMS2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800

Graphics board
EVGA 256-P2-N624-AR GeForce 7900GS 256MB

or

SAPPHIRE 100186L Radeon X1950XT 256MB

As for the rest of the system, I will be reusing most of it, the case is still in fine condition as well as my HDDs, I might purchase another SATA HDD because currently Im using a 40gb PATA as my media drive >_<

My reasoning for buying the E4300 is from what I've read, you can OC the shit out of it and get performance just about as good as an E6600, If I am misinterpreting what I am reading, please correct me and provide an alternate option, thanks guys.

More about : cheap gaming rig critique

February 27, 2007 4:37:47 AM

Looks good to me :) 

Although this is just a polite suggestion dont get those graphic cards. Get a 8800 Gts 320 instead, you can find them with good rebates http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

Its the Evga 8800 320MB super clocked version with Dark Messiah , Lifetime Warranty and Step up Program .

IMHO really worth the money , you wont need a new card for a while . :D 

Think about it :) 
February 27, 2007 4:49:44 AM

Quote:
Processor
Intel Core 2 Duo E4300 Allendale 1.8GHz

Motherboard
GIGABYTE GA-965P-DS3

Memory
CORSAIR XMS2 2GB (2 x 1GB) 240-Pin DDR2 SDRAM DDR2 800

Graphics board
EVGA 256-P2-N624-AR GeForce 7900GS 256MB

or

SAPPHIRE 100186L Radeon X1950XT 256MB

As for the rest of the system, I will be reusing most of it, the case is still in fine condition as well as my HDDs, I might purchase another SATA HDD because currently Im using a 40gb PATA as my media drive >_<

My reasoning for buying the E4300 is from what I've read, you can OC the **** out of it and get performance just about as good as an E6600, If I am misinterpreting what I am reading, please correct me and provide an alternate option, thanks guys.
Looks good to me...you interpreted what you read right. :wink: What PSU are you going to be using? If it's your old one, is it powerful enough for the new setup. You'll probably need a decent ~500w PSU .GL :) 
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February 27, 2007 1:29:21 PM

Quote:
Processor
My reasoning for buying the E4300 is from what I've read, you can OC the **** out of it and get performance just about as good as an E6600, If I am misinterpreting what I am reading, please correct me and provide an alternate option, thanks guys.


OC'ing is (almost) like gambling. Sometimes you get lucky and can get high OC speeds that are stable, and sometimes you're SoL and crash after a minor OC increase. Nothing is guaranteed in OC'ing. If you want guaranteed high speeds, you have to spend extra for a e6600. Then again, most people do have good luck and can get the e4300 to 3 GHz. Your mileage may vary, but you have a good chance of OC'ing it to 2.5-3GHz w/o too much trouble. I myself plan on getting it (or maybe the e4400) and OC'ing it to 3 GHz. Plan on using a similar mobo as you too, getting the S3 version, a tad cheaper and no difference that I can see worth spending extra money on.


You could go a tad cheaper on the RAM and go with 667MHz. I think you need a CPU that can reach 400 Mhz FSB to fully utilize 800 speed RAM. If my understanding is wrong, do correct me, I don't like giving out wrong info.

For gfx card, you can get the 8800 GTS 320, or wait til the 8600 GT/Ultra comes out for $150-180 and should out-perform pre-DX10 cards. Maybe the x1950 xtx will beat em, but once dx10 becomes standard, the x1950 is nothing more than an expensive paperweight.

40 gigs doesn't sound that great for a media HD. You can find 100+ gig HD for less than $100. More specifically, you can get a 160gig HD for 60 bucks.
February 27, 2007 1:49:31 PM

Go with the Gigabyte S3, you'll never push the DS3 hard and long enough to burn it out before you replace your system. So that'll save you some money. Otherwise go with a Biostar 965P that's even cheaper and still overclocks great.

Get 667 RAM if you wanna hit high OC speeds.

And 8800GTS 320mb FTW! It's a very compelling product for $300....why spend 2/3 of that on a DX9 card? Either go big or don't go and just get a 7600GT and jump to DX10 in 6 months. Going in between is a waste of money really when you look at the return on your investment.
February 27, 2007 3:41:06 PM

Thanks for all the replies guys.

My current power supply is a OCZ 550w, I dont remember when I bought it, but I dont think its even a year old.

So here is a revised list based on some input from you guys:

Processor
Same

Motherboard
GIGABYTE GA-965P-S3

Memory
Well, I'm not exactly sure what some good 667 memory is, if someone could point me in the right direction for that, i'd appreciate it.

Graphics board
EVGA 320-P2-N811-AR GeForce 8800GTS 320MB

Hdd
Seagate Barracuda 7200.10 ST3320620AS (Perpendicular Recording Technology) 320GB
Read good things about this hard drive so I figured I'd give it a whirl.

So I think thats what I'm gonna order so let me know how that looks and id deff appreciate a few pointers on the memory, I dont know much about it.
February 27, 2007 4:01:11 PM

Good improvement there, well done.

Now, about the RAM. Depends on hardcore you want to overclock. If you wanna push it pretty hard, you'll need some decent 667 RAM. Also an aftermarket heatsink is adviseable....not necessary, but beneficial. Nice thing there is you can add it later if you want to save some money now. Or drop the extra $40 and be done with it ;) 

RAM brands is rather subjective, it all depends on your budget and how hard you want to overclock. 667 RAM with 5-x-x-x timings will be the best bargain. 4-x-x-x timings will be more expensive but is better overall. HOWEVER, you might need to loosen those timings to 5-x-x-x anyways so you can just go with the 5 stuff to begin with ;) 

Corsair, G.Skill, OCZ have 667 on the affordable side. SuperTalent, Buffalo, Patriot, and Kingston have some nice mid-range stuff. Team Group, Mushkin, Corsair, and Cellshock have some high-end stuff.

Take a look and see what fits into your budget, then post here for feedback.
February 27, 2007 7:08:44 PM

Well, they're both CL4 so that's good. Both us Promos chips AFAIK, so that's about equal. OCZ SOE will let you run up to 2.2v without voiding the warranty, can't find anything about Corsair.

I hear the Corsair is a bit hit-and-miss. I have the OCZ SOE myself (DDR-900 though) and it runs like a champ at stock volts. Have had good success overclocking with it too. I don't have personal experience with the newer Corsair stuff.

Both should hit some decent overclocks. I'd go with the OCZ since it's a fair bit cheaper. Both are good though, it's like Coke vs Pepsi.....same idea.
February 27, 2007 7:50:36 PM

Awesome, I really appreciate your help, its been very beneficial in making selections, now about that pesky income tax check that hasn't come yet.... =D
February 27, 2007 9:35:53 PM

Not a prob.

Post back if you need more help, there are alot of knowledgeable and experienced people here. And we will work for a cookie ;)  LOL
February 28, 2007 3:21:14 AM

Quote:
Not a prob.

Post back if you need more help, there are alot of knowledgeable and experienced people here. And we will work for a cookie ;)  LOL[/quote

] and a glass of milk , chocolate cake :p 
March 2, 2007 7:02:21 PM

I really like this build and am thinking about copying it xD

I was just wondering what wattage power supply would be recomended on something like this?


I was planning on putting this in an Antec P180 case
with a tuniq tower 120 cooler for the processor...

Does that sound like it would work well?
!